Sister Ursula Joyce, Executive Director of Thorpe Village and Dowling Gardens senior living residences in Sparkill, NY, was among 87 volunteers recognized by the New York State Office for the Aging (NYSOFA) during the annual Older New Yorkers’ Day celebration on November 17. During a virtual ceremony, NYSOFA Director Greg Olsen praised this year’s honorees from across New York State for donating their time, experience, and expertise to improving the lives of others in their communities.
Sister Ursula was recognized for improving the quality of life within Rockland County through her involvement in the community, including serving as a board member for St. Thomas Aquinas College Board of Trustees, the Center for Safety and Change, the Rockland County Commission on Human Rights, Home Aides of Rockland, Chairperson of the Rockland County Child Care Coalition, and founding board member and past president of United Hospice of Rockland.
When asked about volunteering, Sister Ursula said, “When you volunteer, you get back one hundred percent and more! You have an opportunity to grow personally and learn. You also meet so many wonderful people from all walks of life.”
In a press release on the event Mr. Olsen noted, “We have highlighted for years the significant contributions older New Yorkers make to their families, communities, and the economy. The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated how important volunteers of all ages are, particularly those age 60 and older, as they have put themselves at risk to provide critical services to older adults in their homes to slow the spread of the virus. We recognize how essential our state’s older volunteers are—without their efforts, many individuals would not have the food, supplies, and medications they need to help ensure their health and safety. Every day, these volunteers are saving lives. I could not be more thankful and proud.”
NYSOFA’s annual Older New Yorkers’ Day honors extraordinary individuals who demonstrate the spirit of civic engagement and selflessness through their actions. You can see the event video here.